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Senate Passes Reinsurance Bill

Senate Passes Reinsurance Bill Photo: KSTP

March 15, 2017 08:46 PM

The Minnesota Senate Wednesday night passed a 'reinsurance' bill meant to reduce health insurance premiums next year.

It follows a bill passed by the House Monday by a vote of 77-53. But there are differences between the two bills that will have to be worked out in conference committee.

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The Senate bill, entitled the 'Minnesota Premium Security Plan,' aims to stabilize the individual market and lower premiums by subsidizing health insurance companies to reduce their exposure to huge medical claims.

RELATED: House Aims to Stem Health Insurance Rate Hikes, Stabilize Market

Minnesota has grappled with some of the largest rate increases in the nation. Premiums jumped by as much as 67 percent for shoppers buying insurance on their own this year, leading lawmakers to use $312 million in budget reserves to buy down monthly rates for 2017.

The bill passed by House Republicans Monday would also put in place a reinsurance plan giving hundreds of millions of dollars in subsidies to health insurance companies. The goal of both bills is to encourage them to offer lower insurance premiums to Minnesotans.

Gov. Mark Dayton and legislative Democrats instead propose creating a public option to buy into the low-income health care program MinnesotaCare.

The Associated Press contributed to this report

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KSTP

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